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CBS Sporstline's Greg Doyle discovers the heart and soul of Bruin basketball:


Photo: Getty Images (via CBS Sportsline)

Afflalo, a 6-foot-5 sophomore shooting guard, has overtaken Farmar and damn near everyone else out West. Not that Afflalo seems to care about that. He says he's not competing with Farmar, and UCLA coach Ben Howland says he's not lying.

"Great kid," Howland says of Afflalo. "He could care less about that stuff."

Here's what Afflalo has to say about the perception that he's Robin to Farmar's Batman.

"That's just the way things work," he says. "Jordan had a very good freshman year, and I think he deserved everything he got. He's still getting the aftermath of that, and he's still playing well. I'm definitely not out to prove I'm better than him. If anything, it helps me. People coming out to watch him, whether it's NBA scouts or average fans, they're going to see me. And we're winning, which is the only thing anybody cares about."

Indeed, UCLA is doing that. The year before Farmar, Afflalo, Josh Shipp and Lorenzo Mata arrived, the Bruins were 11-17 overall, 7-11 in the Pac-10. Last season, with Farmar averaging 13.2 points and 5.3 assists and earning Pac-10 Freshman of the Year, the Bruins reversed their records -- 18-11, 11-7 -- and reached the 2005 NCAA Tournament.

This season, even with the worst rash of injuries in college basketball and a loss Saturday to No. 13 Washington, No. 11 UCLA (14-3) is off to its best start since 1995, the year of its last national championship. Farmar's again playing great, averaging 12.7 points and 6.1 assists. But Afflalo's playing better -- better than almost anyone in the West. After Gonzaga's Adam Morrison, a frontrunner for national player of the year, Afflalo belongs in the Best of the West conversation with Washington's Brandon Roy, Nevada's Nick Fazekas, Cal's Leon Powe and Arizona's Hassan Adams.
Read the whole piece. I will of course take AA not only over any of those West Coast clowns, I will take AA over Duke Vitale's obsession - JJ Redick. AA has become the Ed O'Bannon of Ben Howland's basketball orogram. I have a feeling he is going to bring the banner back in Pauley. GO BRUINS.